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“Tandala - I'll be back” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Tandala Tented Camp

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Tandala Tented Camp
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Ruaha National Park, Tanzania   |  
Hotel amenities
Mbeya, Tanzania
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“Tandala - I'll be back”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 31, 2012

Tandala is a hidden gem. I stayed two nights in July 2012 during a safari at Ruaha National Park and I will be going back in only a couple weeks. Ruaha is my favorite park in Tanzania and the camp site of Tandala is safe, but close enough to still be thrilling. Elephants roam the camp grounds and enjoy the waterhole right beside the open dining area, and we were woken up by the Masai warriors at 4am to come down and see the pack of 4 lions that were roaming the area. The food was delicious, showers are hot, the price is right, and the owners of the camp are enjoyable and inviting. Five stars.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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51 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (11)
Date | Rating
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English first
Fremont, California, United States
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 20, 2012

I stayed at Tandala for 2 nights in August and it was a great part of the whole Safari experience. As a matter of fact, because of the watering hole, the elephants here were closer than in the Park. There was also plenty of baboon activity in the nearby trees during the day and cats prowling around the camp at night. Having the Masai escorts made one feel totally safe. The only drawback was that I gained a kilo because the food was so good and the portions generous but it was nice to have dinner outside by the campfire. Even if one wasn't there to see animals, this would be a great place to relax.

Room Tip: Get a tent close to a watering hole so you can watch the animals from the veranda.
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Washington, DC, USA
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 20, 2012

Could not have enjoyed our long weekend any more at Tandala. We were overwhelmed by the physical beauty of the park and of the camp, and SO thrilled with the quality of our accomodation (which, by virtue of being several kms from the entrance to the park, is markedly less expensive than the in-park camps, but still just as accessible/ wild). Despite other comments that it is a half-hour away and can only be accessed with full-day game drives, the national park is in fact only a 10 minute drive away, and we easily did half- and full-day game drives into the park. Since the animals don't know about park boundaries, we saw TONS of elephants/ giraffes/ lions/ kudu/ impala/ baboons and even a wild dog and two leopards all within the tented camp! The tents were absolutely stunning, and we were awoken numerous evenings by the sounds of lions and elephants within meters of our sleeping quarters (luckily which are raised from the ground and watched over by the Masai guards!). The food was delicious, and the lounge area in which we sat in the evenings over Tanzania beers was stunning and very comfortable. The owners are friendly and invested in the community and their property, and the staff is delightful.

The park is uncrowded, untamed, and stunningly beautiful. Within 20 minutes of entering the park on our first half-day game drive, we found a pack of 16 lions devouring a fresh giraffe kill! We saw just about every other animal imaginable (including a leopard in a tree, and in total 38 lions, in just 1 1/2 days of game drives). Our guides from Gazelle Safaris were fabulous, and found lots of hidden areas where we were the only car for miles around.

Our only regret is that we couldn't have stayed longer. Thank you!

Room Tip: Room 9 seemed to have the best access to random spottings of lions, leopards. Rooms 1 and 2 were in...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tel Aviv, Israel
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2012

I have visited Tandala Tented Camp twice. Once without and once with my children. I can only say: I am looking forward to our next stay. The parc is perfectly situated just outside the gates of Ruaha. Elephants love the place and are frequent visitors. It's spectacular to see them drink at the water basin. The tents are really comfortable and have a good bathroom. Taking a shower, watching the stars, is really special. Security is very well maintained in the camp. Masai cover all spots, I have not been worried for a seconf for my children. Food is very good and the management is very much involved, interested and serviceminded.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Luxembourg City, Luxembourg
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 14, 2012

Of course the place is great, comfortable, food is good, and we can see and hear the animals. But local camps just nearby are also great, for 5 times cheaper.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 30, 2012

What an amazing place! The accommodations and meals are excellent but the real attraction is that the nearby water holes that draw a lot of elephants. At night we could hear elephant fights (trumpeting and growling), lions roaring nearby and hyena wandering through the camp. Ruaha National Park is an absolute must-see. Over a two day period we saw about 60 lions and, in one afternoon, over 150 elephants browsing in a dry river bed.

Room Tip: The tents with a view of the waterholes are the best locations.
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  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
VT
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 18, 2011

We had the pleasure of staying at the wonderful Tandala tented camp in the Ruaha. We feel fortunate we made this choice! Our hosts were welcoming, knowledgable and and very helpful, we had an excellent guide and driver and all the staff where attentive and friendly. We can't say enough about what a special place Tandala is and how if is the perfect place to safari. Great food, very comfortable tent, good deck for animal viewing, and there are many animals to view even in the camp, all our needs catered for and even a pool to cool off in. You may only go on one safari in a lifetime if that is the case you should consider Tandala and the Ruaha as the place to go!

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Tandala Tented Camp

Address: Ruaha National Park, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Iringa Region > Ruaha National Park
Amenities:
Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 10 Specialty Lodging in Ruaha National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 11
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Tandala Tented Camp and Safaris is named after the majestic antelope, the Greater Kudu who frequents the surrounding area. Tandala Tented Camp and Safaris is more than merely a lodge, it is your home away from home. With our simple comforts, intimate atmosphere and friendly staff to make you feel welcome and relaxed, you will be as part of our family. We, at Tandala Tented Camp and Safaris, offer luxurious tented accommodation, fine cuisine and a great safari experience. ... more   less 

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